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Freelancer (Windows)

Published by
Developed by
Released
Platform
84
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.8
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
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Description

The war between the Coalition and the Alliance depicted in Starlancer had raged on and the Alliance forces were losing. A final plan was organized to punch through the Coalition attackers and send five colony ships across space to the Sirius Sector. 900 years have passed since then and the Sirius sector has been colonized by the surviving ships, dividing the area between four major nations: Liberty, Rheinland, Kusari and Bretonia. The fifth sleeper ship, Hispania, suffered a malfunction in flight, and is thought lost. In the spacelanes between these nations borders and outside of any specific jurisdiction lie undeveloped solar systems, pirate bases, corporate outposts and the neutral Freeports. One of these Freeports has come under attack and been destroyed by an unknown enemy attack. Survivors of the attack, including a freelancer Edison Trent and his business associate, Lonnigan, are evacuated to Planet Manhattan, capital city of the Liberty nation. Once there Edison hears rumors about military buildups and friction between the Sirius nations. It will be up to Trent to seek employment, rebuild his lost assets and discover the meaning behind these rumors.

Freelancer is a third person or first person space simulator and trading game, much like Elite or Wing Commander: Privateer. Players, taking the role of Edison Trent, will need to visit several locations on each planet in order to trade cargo, buy and repair equipment as well as obtain information. In space, Trent controls his spacecraft from either a first person or third person perspective and is able to use primary and secondary weapons. Destroyed enemy spacecraft often leave behind cargo which can be tractor beamed into the cargo hold.

Freelancer is a plot-driven game that slowly becomes completely open-ended. As such the player (eventually) has the freedom to fly around 150 planets across 40 solar systems looking for profit. As Trent trades cargo and undertakes missions (following an expanding story arc) he will affect the faction status status of over 50 different groups (comprising of 3000 NPCs). Faction Status will affect their attitudes towards Trent, including interaction planetside and in space.

Screenshots

Freelancer Windows Giant Structures: Approaching a spacedock, guarded by weapon platforms.
Freelancer Windows In-game Cutscene 1: The end of an alien.
Freelancer Windows In Formation: A swarm of Corsair fighters swoops past.
Freelancer Windows Main game menu is shown on the animated background

Alternate Titles

  • "自由枪骑兵" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "星際遊俠" -- Chinese spelling (traditional)

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Good game, Just wish they could have done more William Shawn McDonie (1152) 2.86 Stars2.86 Stars2.86 Stars2.86 Stars2.86 Stars
A pretty decent space-shooter ex_navynuke! (48) unrated
Great game, but too linear and too short... Riamus (8121) 4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars4.57 Stars
Not all the free-lancing one would expect... tbuteler (3026) 3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars
Some Freespace, Wing Commander, and secret spice all mixed together! Josh Miller (7) 4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars
If you "loved" Wing Commander: Privateer, you will "Like" Freelancer. uttergentile (13) 3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars3.14 Stars
Good graphics and plot, but not enough real "Freelancing." Jester236 (39) 3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars
Such a long wait for this game and all in waste.... Marina Shoykhet (7) 2.43 Stars2.43 Stars2.43 Stars2.43 Stars2.43 Stars

The Press Says

Netjak Apr 03, 2003 9.2 out of 10 92
Game industry News (GiN) 2003 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
games xtreme Mar 24, 2003 9 out of 10 90
Gamesdog Dec 15, 2003 9 out of 10 90
Boomtown Apr 09, 2003 9 out of 10 90
Jeuxvideo.com May 26, 2003 17 out of 20 85
ComputerGames.ro Mar 17, 2003 84 out of 100 84
ActionTrip Feb 27, 2003 82 out of 100 82
Game Informer Magazine May, 2003 8 out of 10 80
GameSpot (Belgium/Netherlands) Mar 28, 2003 78 out of 100 78

Forums

Topic # Posts Last Post
88 Flak - Awesome Mod! 1 John Doe
Apr 21, 2009
Destructible Universe Mod 1 John Doe
Apr 21, 2009

Trivia

Intro (Spoiler!)

There's a previous version of the intro video. Alike the final release version, the intro told the story of how the Alliance was losing the war to the Coalition and launched five sleeper ships to the Sirius sector. Unlike the final version, the story continues where the Alliance retreated all the way to Pluto to make their final stand. Just when they were about to engage the Coalition ships, a large alien vessel appeared... and destroyed the Solar System! There was a young Alliance general who survived the destruction and headed to warn the colonists at the Sirius sector... saying that mankind has finally found their real enemy: The Nomads.

For certain reasons this version of intro was changed into the final release.

Mods

If you have issues with how controlled the jumpgates are in relation to the plot or how pirate shields never regenerate or how you never see battleships patrolling the spacelanes... then rejoice! There are player-made mods to address all these issues. New Systems, New Ships... even options to turn off the plot and explore the galaxy like a real freelancer. See related links for mod sites

References

In Freelancer you can talk to many, many people. Most of the time in bars. And all of them have names... sooooo many names had to be invented for all those people... why not take real names from real people, might have thought the designers and gave some people in the bars vip's names like Erin Roberts and Martin Galway.
  • There is one planet that mimics the movie Planet of the Apes and can be found somewhere in the Fringe system, but beware of the nomads there.
  • Before Freelancer's release, Bargib, aka Christian Koerner, a site admin of Freelancer fansite The Lancers Reactor, requested to be featured in the Freelancer release. He got his wish; the bartender on Planet New Berlin is named Christian Koerner.
  • Awards

    • E3
      • 1999 - Best of Show
      • 1999 - Best PC Game
      • 1999 - Best Simulation
      • 1999 - Outstanding Achievement in Graphics
    Information also contributed by Arvin Chandra, tsukasagoeth, Twilightseer, WildKard and Zovni

    Related Web Sites

    • Freelancer (Official Website)
    • Lancer's Reactor (A good source for Star/Freelancer information and a growing collection of player-made MODs, editors and utilities.)
    • Project UberLancer (A Freelancer community wide project to build the ultimate Freelancer mod)
    Arvin Chandra (45) added Freelancer (Windows) on Mar 03, 2003